Mini Black Forest Cheesecakes

For The Crust:
  • 3/4 cup chocolate cookie crumbs
  • 2 1/2 tbsp melted butter
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • For The Cheesecake Batter:
  • 1 cup cream cheese, one 8 oz block
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 4 rounded tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup whipping cream
For The Cherry Compote:
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh pitted cherries
  • 1/2 cup water, 1/4 +1/4
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 rounded tsp corn starch
For the Vanilla Whipped Cream:
  • 3 /4 cup whipping cream
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 tbsp icing sugar, powdered sugar
  • 3 tbsp grated chocolate for garnish
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Place 12 paper liners in the muffin pans. Mix together the cookie crumbs, butter and sugar.
Divide evenly between the 12 paper lined muffin cups and press the crumbs firmly into the bottom of each.
For the Cheesecake Batter:
Mix together the cream cheese, sugar, cocoa and vanilla until smooth. Beat in the egg. Finally blend in the whipped cream until smooth.
Divide the cheesecake filling equally between the 12 muffin cups and bake for 15-20 minutes until the cheesecake has set and does not jiggle when you give the pan a slight shake. Remove from the oven and cool completely.
For the Cherry Compote:
Add the cherries, sugar and 1/4 cup water to a small saucepan and very slowly bring it up to a simmer. You don’t want to boil this mixture rapidly because you don’t want to break the cherries down completely.
Simmer very slowly for only 3-4 minutes. Dissolve the corn starch in the remaining 1/4 cup room temperature water and stir it slowly into the boiling mixture.
Bring it back up to a slow simmer and cook for only another minute or two until the compote thickens. Remove from the heat an cool completely to room temperature.
For the Vanilla Whipped Cream:
Beat together the whipping cream icing sugar and vanilla to firm peaks. Transfer to a piping bag with a large star tip or if you don’t have a piping bag, just use a large Ziploc bag with an 1/2 inch opening snipped off the corner.
Pipe a ring of whipped cream around the outer edge of the cooled cheesecakes, spoon some cherry compote into the center of the ring and garnish with a sprinkle of grated chocolate.

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